Alaska News Roundup for July 17

  • In whoa that’s a lot of people news, the Peninsula Clarion reveals that over 600 public comments have been filed with the Office of Subsistence Management on the proposed subsistence gillnet rules. The next step will be a work meeting scheduled for July 28-29 to review Red Sheep Creek, Cake Creek decisions, rural designation process, and whether or not to re-evaluate the re-designation of Saxman.
  • The Ketchikan City Council made a bunch of its residents rather happy last night with their decision to increase salaries and to better the benefit packages for both IBEW and non-union employees.
  • Gov. Bill Walker has gone with the nuclear option of using his executive power after months of trying the diplomatic approach with the legislature on Medicaid expansion. The Senate Majority was not amused. However, Alaska Democratic Party Chair Mike Wenstrup was positively glowing in a celebratory email that thanked all those involved in getting Medicaid expanded.Thanks


  • Finally! From the mouth of Sen. Lisa Murkowski, her highly anticipated energy package will “hopefully [be out] by the end of this week”, per Politico.

  • Kenai City Council was not having it last night when they summarily voted the idea of a prohibition on commercial cannabis out of their presence before the proposal was even allowed to be discussed, per the Peninsula Clarion.
  • Ohio’s Columbus Dispatch has publically come out in support of renaming Mt. McKinley to Denali. This is just the latest in a concerted, national effort to properly name North America’s tallest peak.Denali


  • The rewrite of the No Child Left Behind law passed 81-17 in the Senate. Both Sen. Lisa Murkowski and Sen. Dan Sullivan voted for the bill.
  • The Hill reports that Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-OR) just declared legislative war on our Washington Delegation with his introduction to block offshore drilling in the Arctic.
  • The dreaded “t” word (as in taxes) was used by Office of Management and Budget Director Pat Pitney in a speech to the Juneau Chamber of Commerce where she detailed possible taxes (page 18-19) to increase revenue and fill the massive budget gap Alaska is facing. Bring on the Casinos!


    Graph Credit of the AK Dept. of Revenue

  • Congratulations to Ketchikan’s Jeff Schultz on his appointment to the fire Code Board of Appeals!


    Photo Credit of

  • Dillingham is possibly getting a visit by the Leader of the Free World later this year! APRN reports that a “pre-advance” team toured the town and facilities to properly plan for the president’s potential visit.
  • With a heavy heart, Alaska says goodbye to Mike Burns. It was under his leadership that the Alaska Permanent Fund Corporation grew from $26 billion in 2004 to today’s $54 billion. Mr. Burns died at the age of 68 and will be remembered for his visionary direction that saw a diversification of the PFC’s assets.


    Photo Credit of


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